Monday, January 15, 2007

Willie's Children's Book called The Painted Zebra was inspired by Martin Luther King Jr. (It's his Birthday! so I thought I'd let you know about my story)

Hello all, If you haven't read the children's book I wrote I wanted to give you a chance to check it out!

The Painted Zebra

Wrtten and illustrated by Willie Chambers in 2002

(For sample color pages at click on the star that says "writing")

(takes about 2 minutes to read)


Zoey the Zebra and Alley the girl
Were the two bestest friends in the whole widest world.
They rode on the beach, and they played in the sun
From morning to evening through dusk until dawn.

They swam in blue lakes and ran through green hills
Found faces in clouds and picked daffodils.
All was quite well in their nice peaceful place
Until that one day when along came THE RACE.

Excited at first when they both saw the sign,
But sad when they read the last small frightful line...


Alley and Zoey were shocked in despair.
This couldn't be true it was just plain unfair.
They both were quite stunned as they stopped and they stared.
'Cause "Who can say who is allowed to go where?"

They sort of felt bad, even felt down right mad
Just seconds ago they were happy and glad.
They wanted to race and they wanted to win.
They needed a plan but where to begin?

They thought and they thought,
”How can we win first prize?”
Said Alley, "I've got it! We need a disguise."
So they thought, and they thought, and they thought up some more.
They thought until both of their heads got quite sore.

They walked and they thought up so hard they felt faint
Alley thought to herself, “What we need is brown paint.
This is the answer! We know what we need!
But we need to be secret, just between you and me.”

So they found paint and loaded it into the cart
And they knew in their hearts they could win with their smarts.

They went to their top-secret place in the trees
Where no one could see them through all the thick leaves
They painted and painted all through the clear night
And slowly but surely covered up all the stripes

You look like a horse now We can't see your stripes
And no one would know now, what's on the inside
There's nothing to hide here We've changed your whole type
And tomorrow, we'll show them the ride of our lives!

Now we are ready,but we need to rest
We need a good sleep so that we'll do our best
They slept feeling happy & very aware,
‘Cause no one could tell them where who can go where.

The next morning they went and they entered the race,
As everyone came from all over the place.
(They sneakily entered the race as a horse,
'Cause no one could tell a brown zebra of course).
The horses and jockeys lined up at the gate,
All hoping a win would determine their fate.

The crowd's eager eyes stared with anticipation,
As feelings swept through them with nervous emotions.
The track was all set. Everyone placed their bets,
But the zebra's disguise wasn't noticed quite yet.

Then the crowd got real quiet, as wind then did blow.
And the sun became covered, shading all down below.
The horses were ready all ten in a row,
And then it all started, with "READY, SET, GO!"

They were all off like lightning, a chase to the end.
Alley whispered to Zoey, "Let's win this best friend!"
They rushed down the track, zebra painted in brown,
Hoping to prove that they should wear the crown.

The sky became dark and it started to sprinkle.
Wet paint on the zebra then started to trickle.
The wind and the rain washed the paint off her nose,
Until finally leaving the zebra exposed.

"That's not a horse!" said a face in the crowd.
"Don't they know zebras were never allowed?"
"But look at it run! It's setting the pace!
It shows that they know, zebras CAN run the race."

They ran neck and neck speeding straight down the stretch.
These horses were fast, just as fast as they get.
They came to the finish, the crowd held their breath,
But Zoey was fastest, and too hard to catch.

They crossed the line first and won the whole race.
They felt the great feeling of feeling so great.
The crowd stood up smiling with thundering cheers.

And the crowd was all smiles when down came the sign.
That race was the day, that they all changed their minds.
We don't care about stripes. We're all one of a kind.
And now zebras can race any place, any time.

The End.

Original story written by Willie Chambers in 1985.

Rewritten and illustrated in 2002.

Copyright 2002.

If you would like to see some sample pages with color illustrations go to and click the star that says:


There’s a movie that came out in 2005 similar to the story I wrote called Racing Stripes starring Dustin Hoffman, Whoopi Goldberg,David Spade, Snoop Dog.

Thanks for reading the story! Hope you liked it!

posted by Willie @ 7:45 PM
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